Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Gazette Premium Content Book puts spotlight on thyroid

By Megan Wood megan.wood@gazette.com - Published: July 18, 2013

Pharmaceutical medicine doesn't cut it for Dr. Steven Hotze, and he explains why in "Hypothyroidism, Health & Happiness."

In his latest book, the two-time author tackles hypothyroidism, a common condition that goes undiagnosed in 1 of 10 people, he says.

Hypothyroidism is a shortage of thyroid cells in the body. At the cellular level, the glands might not be producing enough thyroid hormones. With a lack of those hormones, people could experience fatigue, weight fluctuation, joint muscle pain, low body temperature and hair loss, to name a few symptoms.

The condition can arise from many causes, including autoimmune thyroiditis, in which antibodies attack the healthy thyroid cells, female hormone imbalance or birth control side effects. The problem, according to Hotze, is that most physicians rely solely on blood work to test for hypothyroidism. The blood tests often overlook hypothyroidism and miss the root of the problem completely, he contends.

"The (normal blood test) range is as tall as the Empire State Building and wide as the Grand Canyon," Hotze said. "Instead of masking symptoms with drugs, we get to the underlying causes of the symptoms."

Hotze, who was at The Broadmoor last week to sign copies of his book, has developed a more natural approach in his practice, saying he "helps people get off drugs" prescribed by other physicians.

Patients with symptoms of hypothyroidism often are misdiagnosed and treated with antidepressants or anti-anxiety medications when all they really need is greater thyroid hormone levels to regain health, Hotze said. In his book, he reveals symptoms, causes and treatment for hypothyroidism, and explains how to test for low levels of thyroid hormone.

The host of a weekday radio program in Houston, "Health and Wellness Solutions," Hotze is also the founder and CEO of Hotze Health & Wellness Center in Houston.

"We got out of the medical business in 1977 and got into the hospitality business," said Hotze, who makes sure that the center's visitors are called guests, not patients, because "they're not numbers, they're real people."

The health center has served tens of thousands of people, helping them regain control of their lives, Hotze said. Many had been to countless other physicians by the time they decided to try something different and visit Hotze's health center.

"We partner with our guests to help them get on the path to health and wellness," he said.

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